FLORENCE IRENE MARET Oct. 28, 1929 – Sept. 11, 2021
Florence Irene Maret died on September 11, 2021, of natural causes. True to her late husband’s motto, she “did it her way” and slipped away quietly, peacefully, and painlessly.
Florence (Flo) was born in Lincoln, Nebraska to Hayden Dean and Ruby Irene (Rodaway) Rhodes on October 28, 1929. Flo was born with a heart of gold and during her childhood developed a true desire to serve people. After graduating High School, Flo attended nursing school in Hastings, Nebraska and graduated in 1950 as a Registered Nurse.
It was during nursing school that Flo met the love of her life, Dean Maret. Flo and Dean were married on March 4, 1951 and remained married for 50 years until Dean’s death in 2001. Flo and Dean welcomed their first child in 1953 and moved to Los Alamos, NM in 1956 when Dean began his career in law enforcement as a member of the Atomic Energy Commission’s Protective Force.
After moving to Los Alamos, Flo and Dean welcomed two more children and Flo began her thirty-plus year career working at Los Alamos Medical Center. She worked for many years as a bed-side nurse and ultimately became the hospital’s House Supervisor. During her many years at LAMC she took care of thousands of patients with love, respect, and care. She was a dedicated worker who also loved her coworkers dearly. In fact, coworker’s birthdays were individually celebrated with homemade and specially decorated cakes and the Holiday’s always brought the cherished gift of a homemade tree ornament.
Flo’s personal time was spent raising her children, knitting, crocheting, crafting, reading, chit-chatting with friends, hosting Tupperware parties, sampling new lipsticks from Avon, and bringing amazing casseroles and baked goods to potluck dinners. She also loved to play cards and dominos (pinocle and Mexican train were her favorite), watching movies on VHS, and digging the many dandelions that grew like crazy in her yard.
Perhaps the best part of Flo’s life was spent in bible study and followship with her church family at White Rock United Methodist Church.
Her friends, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren will always remember her spontaneous laughter and her genuine love for others.
In 2018 Flo’s mental health began to dwindle and she was no longer able to live on her own. She always said, “If I had a brain, I’d be dangerous” and in her last 3 years of life this was even more true. Fortunately, she found a new home at the Bee Hive of White Rock where she lived until her death. The staff and other residents at the Bee Hive quickly learned to love Flo’s attitude, silly sense of humor, and friendship. The caregivers and other staff at the Bee Hive ensured that Flo’s last years, months, hours, and minutes were spent in an amazing environment filled with compassion and love.
Flo was also cared for in her last days by amazing nurses and staff from AmberCare Hospice. She and her family are truly grateful for all the love that Flo received from the Bee Hive and AmberCare Hospice.
Flo was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, her son, Bruce, her sons-in-law, Edgar Lopez and Louis Sandoval, and her great-granddaughter Abigail. She is survived by her daughters, Mary Lopez and Nancy Sandoval, her 6 grandchildren (Christopher and wife Liz, Kenneth and wife Dianna, Darius and wife Amber, Jordan and his beloved girlfriend Tanne, Lauren, and Kyla), as well as her 9 great-grandchildren (Ally, Victoria, Leilah, Stetson, Isaiah, Eva, Maya, Elijah, and Judah).
Flo never met a person that she didn’t love, respect or cherish. We hope that her caring and giving spirit lives on in all that survive her, whether they be family, friends, or mere acquaintances.
A celebration of Flo’s life, a memorial service will be held at White Rock United Methodist Church on Saturday, September 25, 2021, at 10am. Cremation has taken place and, in accordance with Flo’s wishes, her ashes will be spread in the Jemez Mountains where her husband’s and son’s ashes were spread many years ago.